Friday, 13 July 2012

The Breast Cancer Trap

No-one knows where our individual journeys will end in Cancerland. Some will face the treatment in full without no end in sight. Others will face tests in drips and drabs over the years. Whereas the lucky ones will walk away with just a few scars as a hidden reminder of their journey. I have realised I am currently a drips and drabs person, up from the lucky ones.

People have insinuated that in some way I had gone in search of the full cancer experience, so a true friend offered to come along to meet my oncologist and my BC nurse, so I could prove to her that what is being shared amongst strangers is a lie. She had already seen some of the prods and pokes I have had to endure to prevent me having the full works. She understood my concerns about certain people and how the tide can easily turn when they become irrational.

They may state yes I have spoken to Sarah and I have met Sarah, but truthfully they don’t know enough to pass any judgement. If they did they would not be suggesting I am searching for the full cancer treatment. My friend listened to my whole prognosis being unfolded in front of her and how more tests had to be done this week before a full decision will be made on treatment. It was explained how I had been co-operative throughout the three years of prods and pokes, but this time it is not a pre-cursor to cancer, but cancer.

I am a strong person, but my fear of cancer and its hideous treatment was clear to see.... If we offer you chemo take it. I had been lucky so far with treatment, but that stony faced reply told me they meant business. They knew more than I and if I was to escape from this hospital and the cancer bubble I should at least sit down and consider the options thrown at me. I gradually informed family and friends and each said Sarah if they say Chemo take it, don’t turn your back. And each know how difficult I can be with excepting any treatment. I have had intermittent periods of being treated for various reasons in hospitals for various conditions. Sometimes it was life threatening and I had to be an obedient patient which I am crap at, but I hate hospitals, I hate fuss, I hate medication, but cancer is different. I know this time I am in a cage with only one escape plan which would not be easy.

The nasty side of having cancer hanging over your head is the deep suspicious gossip that is created by the few on forums. This suspicious behaviour or judgement I have seen dozens of times and it will lead to a battle of words. That’s why I say be careful who you befriend because it is like a playground with hyped up emotions.

And to that I will reply to those doubters...
My body started rebelling back in 1990 not 2009.
My blog or pre-cancer diagnosis was not a pity me campaign like others have suggested.
I am a independent strong woman with a view to living life not bleating woes of despair.
I am a realist who already knew I would be back because it was already playing out in front of me and my team.

None of the individuals who proclaimed they knew me have ever met the team that are treating me, but my friend has and she was surprised at my level headed approach to my teams words. I did not panic, I did not burst into tears, I did not make demands, i just listened and said ok what next...
My blog is my way of expressing my interpretation on the whole BC journey I am on.. 

What people need to realise is you cannot compare one person with anothers treatment, thats why I refuse to advise. My treatment is prevention and so is theirs it isn’t a cure and you would be naive to even think it is. The lucky ones that manage to clear all activity in one swoop are lucky, but for some because of the unpredictability of cancer it means going back to the drawing board in hope this time it does.

As my BC nurse explained a reoccurrence is common in mastectomies. It is all down to the fact that the skin remains with vessels which leaves a chance that there will be some cancerous cells left behind.  

You cannot create cancer so you can go through what others have gone through that is crazy talk. And I know for a fact my hospital would not hand out expensive medical treatment like candy to ease a paranoid woman’s mind in this current climate.
To sum this blog up...  trust is important amongst friends, family and your team that treat you. If you start a whisper it can create doubt and upset whether it is meant in sincerity or not.


  1. It is unfortunate that some people think they have the right to judge you and your experience, we take the risk by sharing our stories by blogging etc that we will attract the naysayers, the trolls and people who sit in judgement on other peoples choices. YOur choices are yours because of your individual experience just as my choices are mine based on how the cancer presents in me and my experiences both in life and the medical sphere. Nobody else can make choices for you - stand tall and know that even though I dont know you I support you from afar... Jenny from New Zealand

    1. Ty Jenny and I hope you are doing ok on your journey?.. Sometimes this whole bubble we are in causes confusion. I want to move away from it hence the autograph collecting with Sophia because it becomes so heated with opinions, but whether I like it or not I cannot forget because of the upcoming appointments. Ohhh well life ticks on and fingers crossed they do not find any other cancer glitches other than the recurrance xx

  2. Sarah, it's really sad when others in this 'Club' pass judgment on one. There is nothing trifling about having the cancer Sword of Damocles hanging over one's head, no matter how it got parked there.

    I find usually that attacks and judgment reflect the struggles of the person expressing them & have nothing to do with me. Still, it's hard not to feel hurt & misunderstood. Have had some truly idiotic assumptions made about me by healthcare colleagues, of all people, who really should know better, and which I've had to struggle to let go of.

    We do find out who are friends are -- and are not -- through this experience.


    1. I guess it was just my turn Amazon.. but I am so much better than those that are creating the whisper campaign.. A blog is a powerful tool in showing others the pit falls of forums... and how trolls could actually be the people you have trusted and befriended ... which is a shame..